Theology of Time
1. Time is a gift
Time is one of creation’s “goods”
-Do we receive time as a good gift from God, that we are to enjoy and to steward, or do we experience time as a taskmaster? Do we manage time or does time manage us?
- God will give me the time to accomplish what it is God’s will for me to accomplish, and that is time enough for me.
2. Time is the matrix of the sacred
Time is Holy. The spiritual life begins to decay when we fail to sense the grandeur of what is eternal in time.
- If God is not found here in the now, “among the pots and the pans” as St. Theresa of Avilia would say, God won’t be found “then” or “out there” somewhere either. Living spirituality demands that we be “present tense” people.
3. Time is experienced differently in different situations
The situation we are in greatly affects our perception of the passing time.
4. The only time we really have is the present moment, now.
God is not the “I was” or the “I will be” but “I am.”
-If we do not find God in the present moment, we are unlikely to encounter the Divine at all.
- The attentiveness to the present is a wise spiritual discipline. How can we really listen to God and to others if we aren’t really present?
Time is more than chronology, time is opportunity. It is the means by which God makes use in order to reveal his gracious working. Time is valuable because God has entered time and brought eternity into it. If as Christians believe, God has entered time in Jesus Christ, then the value of time has been established. And if the time is fulfilled in Jesus Christ, then time can no longer be regarded as an empty or endless sequence of moments. We “must make most of the time” (Eph.5:16). What that will mean for each one of us is at the mystery of our individual God-given vocation.
At any moment, some things are coming to birth in us, and some things are dying in us.
Part of our discernment about our time is to be alert to this process.
What is coming to birth in us as individuals? What is dying? Waht are we dying to? These are important questions to examine if we are to have a clear sense of the most fruitful way to “spend our time”?
That some things are dying may be a good thing. ie/ need for success, esteem, etc. having lost touch with why you are doing what you are doing, lose of identity and your role–life as you knew it–to make way for a whole new you.
Whatever is dying, is doing so in God and in God’s loving benevolent will for us. Our time in God’s hands, and so we are safe.